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Thread: ESPN First Take Finals/ Draft Edition

  1. #1

    ESPN First Take Finals/ Draft Edition

    Guys since the draft takes so long, we're going to eventually catch up the picks. We're going to start with the Conf Finals and Finals review and start breaking down the picks and give our takes on the team's futures as they pick as well as any draft day trades. We ask no one interrupt, but WE WILL INVITE GMS ON AFTER THEIR PICKS to react to our reaction and to explain what they're thinking. Please only comment in the league chat thread guys and I hope everyone's excited for it!

    "I don't know if people know I dislocated my pinkie finger. And [Tyreke] told me, 'You wanna go home or you wanna be here?' I want to be here. And he said, 'All right, then go tape it up and let's play. Let's go. We not stoppin' at no stores. Straight gas. That's what we do, just keep going.'"


  2. #2

    Jay Crawford: Good morning folks! And Welcome to another edition of First Take. Today, i'm excited to announce that that we have a special edition for you: The finals/ Draft Day Special. this will be a special 2 hour edition so set your DVRs to record because you won't want to miss a second of this! As usual we have our essentric host, Skip Bayless.

    Skip Bayless: Thank you Jay, and i'm ready to tell you about how I was right and Stephen A. was wrong for his Finals picks and trust me, he will have to eat crow because of it. America, you need to listen up when I speak because I have been OWNING Stephen A. Smith since this show began.

    Jay Crawford: And we have, as Skip mentioned, the always well dressed, Stephen A. Smith to try and combat the always opinionated Skip Bayless.

    Stephan A. Smith: As much as I hate to admit it, Skip beat me on my picks but EVEN A DEAD CLOCK IS RIGHT 2 TIMES A DAY!

    Skip Bayless: Oh stephen A. I got you something special to wear as part of your bet to me, and America will get to see you be humbled and admit I know YOUR SPORT better than you!

    Stephan A. Smith: You are so DISRESPECTFUL. I'm not wearing that garbage.Do I look like a baby to you? No. Don't be disrespectful Skip. You make so many picks you've got to be right on one or two of them. Plus don't take the focus off the show, where we get to talk about the new NBA Champs, and guys that may be NBA champs in years to come. Boy I can't even tell you how excited I am about my New York Knicks and their future.

    Jay Crawford: Alright Gentleman, on to our first topic. Biggest surprise: the Lakers being trounced in the
    Conference Finals or the Wizards moving on after a tough regular season? Skip?

  3. #3
    Skip Bayless: This is an easy one for me because I called it right here on the last show. The Wizards beating the Bulls was not a shock at all to me and here’s why. Last season, we saw Kobe Bryant constantly drop 40 point games in the playoffs, and what it showed me is that Kobe really understand the big picture. And by that I mean, Kobe Bryant understands the regular season is all about surviving to make the playoffs and once the playoffs begin to turn it up a level. What Kobe Bryant proved, is what I suspected last year, that he has another level that we haven’t seen since the great Michael Jordan.

    Stephen A. Smith: Are you comparing Kobe Bryant to Michael Jeffrey Jordan?

    Skip Bayless: Let me finish, and it wouldn’t be the first time Stephen A., I’m just impressed with Kobe Bryant and I think he’s in the running for the best player in the NBA currently, over YOUR BOY Time Duncan.

    Skip Bayless: Now on to my pick for the biggest surprise, and I won’t go as far as calling them YOUR Los Angeles Lakers because we all know you’re a diehard Knicks fan, but they were your pick and have been your pick since acquiring Shaq.

    Skip Bayless: I know I picked the Dallas Mavericks to go on to the Finals, but I thought that this would be a GREAT series and I know I’m not alone in that. The Lakers robbed NBA fans by NOT EVEN SHOWING UP to the Western conference finals. I just don’t get it, they had all the motivation in the world and are a team in their prime. They’re playing the team who beat them last year in the same spot and just didn’t show any heart. The Lakers have Shaq, the best center in the league, Grant Hill, the best 3 and maybe the most versatile player we’ve seen to date, Doug Christie, maybe the best perimeter defender in the league, and an excellent defensive foundation. I’m going to go out on the limb right here on First Take Stephen A..

    Stephen A. Smith: Here we go.

    Skip Bayless: You’re right Stephen A. here we go, If the Los Angeles Lakers don’t make the finals this year, they need to blow it up.

    Stephen A. Smith: You are SO DISRESPECTFUL.

    Skip Bayless:I’m not saying anything that the rest of the world isn’t thinking Stephen A., and I think you’re in the minority. If they don’t win it this year, it’s clear their plan hasn’t worked and it’s time to start over.

    Jay Crawford: There we have it, another bold prediction from Skip Bayless. Stephen A. what do you think is the biggest surprise of the Conference Finals was?

  4. #4
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    Stephen A. Smith: Yeah, the Lakers were a shocker. But I can put 3 fingers on it, Skip. You must be blind if you can't see that the Lakers lack consistent play at the point. They thought Shammond Williams could carry the weight of at least dishing the ball out to Hill or Shaq, but he couldn't even do that right! But look for the Lakers to find a solution in the FA. With Rick Fox deciding to test the Free Agency, they'll need Grant Hill to play the 3 more than ever. But for them to completely blow it up after 1 more season of not putting it together? Preposturous!

    Skip Bayless: Oh I'd love to hear what you have to say about the Wizards. Ca-Caw Ca-Caw. I think we have some crows in the building.

    Stephen A. Smith: More like a dodo bird, and I'm looking at him. The Wizards are a great team. I never said they weren't. I guess Brian Grant rebounded from his girlfriend a lot faster than 2 seasons ago. What hurts you only makes you stronger, I suppose. But that team, as you mentioned, has Brian Grant and Kobe Bryant. Kobe Bryant on ANY team would instantly be a playoff contender. Just imagine if Kobe was on the Lakers.

    Skip Bayless: Oh I know you have already imagined it. It's what you and probably the Lakers GM dream about every night.

    Stephen A. Smith: Anyway, I can't believe I'm doing this. You better get a picture of this and frame is, Skip, because it won't happen again. But yes, you were right with your picks.

    Skip Bayless: I'm sorry, what was that?

    Stephen A. Smith: Only 1 serving of crow per day. ON TO OUR NEXT TOPIC, PLEASE.

    Jay Crawford: Our next topic: Final Thoughts on NBA Finals. Stephen A?

    Stephen A. Smith: I've already touched on the Wizards and how Kobe plus Brian Grant are just a dominating force. It's hard to imagine a team like the Mavs, one that's so well rounded and dominating in its own, would just get HANDLED by the Wizards. If the Wizards can keep Grant and Bryant happy and on the team, this could be a dynasty in the making.

  5. #5
    Skip Bayless:WHAT?! A DYNASTY?

    Stephen A. Smith:Did I stutter?

    Skip Bayless:You should have, you’re CRAZY. I see the Wizards winning maybe one more title after this year in the next 10 years, and honestly I’m FLOORED that they beat the Mavericks, and Stephen A. I won’t rob the fans of my thoughts on the finals and gloss over them because unless you’re a fan of the Knicks, like you, Championships are what matter in the NBA. I know for your team, the Knicks, winning the lottery is equivalent to winning the finals, but not to the rest of the world.

    Skip Bayless: Looking at the Mavericks roster from top to bottom they were HANDS down the better team and I’m going to harp on two points here. One, the lack of adjustment change by the Mavericks and keeping Glenn Rice on Kobe Bryant was a SERIOUS mistake as the coach pointed out AFTER the finals were over. Here you have a 23 year old Paul Pierce, not a defensive Stalwart by any means, but far and away better than Glenn Rice covering anyone but Kobe Bryant.

    Skip Bayless:And on to the second point, I truly think the old Mavericks were just worn out by the time they got to the finals. Karl Malone who retired after the finals just didn’t have anymore tread on his tires after the Soncis took them 7 and then had to go against Shaq. Blalock who was moved to a reserve role after the Cassell trade didn’t bring much to the table at the age of 35 and Glen Rice just got handled by Kobe Bryant.
    Stephen A. Smith:Excuses excuses, Skip, they just didn’t get the job done.

    Skip Bayless: I think with some adjustments and rest, they could have made it a series and not shown up Laker flat out there, that’s all I’m saying. Also that Karl Malone needs to IMMEDIATELY BE PLACED IN THE HALL OF FAME.


    Jay Crawford: Well, with every season ending and a champion being crowned, hope begins again for all the teams in the league with the NBA draft and what is sure to be a wild free agency. With the draft beginning there seems to be a lot of talk about Gotham City where the Knicks scored the top two picks of the draft and selected the Mammoth Yao Ming and Amare Stoudamire. What do you guys think about these picks?

    Skip Bayless: First of all, as we mentioned earlier, Stephen A. is a huge Knicks fan, so I’m going to give him the respect of giving him the lion’s share of time on the response here, but I’ll touch on it here.

    Stephen A. Smith: And I appreciate it Skip.

    Skip Bayless: It’s hard to go wrong here and with the Knicks already having Tony Parker the first pick was an easy selection by taking the next great Center in the NBA Yao Ming. They now have what only the Lakers and the Grizzlies have in a dominant Center. No brainer.

    Skip Bayless: What I’m proud at them for though is taking Amare, who is about as raw as they come, but athleticism that jumps out the building and in 5 years I think will be THE BEST 4 in the league. And now what we have to look at is, after free agency if the Knicks spend their 23 million dollars wisely, could we be talking about a dynasty for the next 10 years winning 5 or 6 titles in that time? I think it’s certainly possible.

    Skip Bayless:Also, I want to touch on something that was not brought to light by the media, but what has to be the worst trade since the redraft of 2000, and that’s the Jazz trade of their pick after having one of the league’s worst records, for Keith Van Horn who really is a Tweener and WAS A FREE AGENT AT THE END OF THE SEASON. We’ve talked about trades before in the past, but this was terrible and I certainly hope the General Manager learned something here. I like the spirit of what he did in the trade by trying to have a winning team, but the season was already lost. Stephen A, let’s hear it.
    Last edited by BallSoHard; 09-17-2012 at 02:49 PM.

  6. #6
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    Stephen A. Smith: I don't know where to start. Oh wait, yeah I do. YAO FREAKIN MING! The next big thing (literally) in New York. In his last year in the Chinese Basketball Association, he averaged 38.9 ppg and 20 rpg during the playoffs. While the level of competition is drastically different, his impact on the Knicks front court will be astounding. He will have to improve his rebounding skills a bit, but get him the ball under the basket and it's almost automatic. And when you have Tony Parker at the point, getting the ball to him won't be a problem at all.

    Stephen A. Smith: That brings us to pick #2: Amare Stoudemire. At first, I thought the GM was going to go for Manu Ginobli. But after shipping out Kenyon Martin to the Blazers for Richard Jefferson, Amare was a no-brainer. Just think of this line-up, Skip. Tony Parker, Rip Hamilton, Richard Jefferson, Amare Stoudemire, and Yao Ming. That's not even considering Corey Magette coming off the bench! I'm going to invest in confetti making and float building companies because there's going to be a lot of parades happening in New York for years to come!

    Skip Bayless: Do you need to change your pants?

    Stephen A. Smith: After coming to the realization that the Knicks have 4 players from the top 7 in the past two drafts, I might need to.

    Skip Bayless: Ok, before Stephen A. wets himself, let's move on to the #3 overall pick: Tayshaun Prince.

    Skip Bayless: Stephen A., are you recovered enough to go first? Do you need a diaper?

    Stephen A. Smith: We need to put a diaper on your mouth. The 3rd overall pick owned by the Blazers at first glance is a bit of a head scratcher. They desperately needed a power forward, which they could have drafted in Carlos Boozer. Instead, they acquired that impact player at the 4 in Kenyon Martin via that trade with the Knicks, simultaneously creating a new void to fill at the 3. Sources close to the Blazers say that they are looking to move towards a new emphasis on defense this coming season, with Richard Jefferson not fitting in that scheme. In moving Jefferson, the Blazers had to pick a small forward at pick #3. This wasn't a bad draft to do so in. Tayshaun Prince and Andrei Kirilenko excel in their defense, while still maintaining the ability to score. Kirilenko is thought to be the better defensive player of the two, but Tayshaun can shoot slightly better. Only time will tell if the Blazers took the right small forward for their team; but they definitely filled a gaping hole in their team with Tayshaun Prince.

    Stephen A. Smith: Skip, have anything to add before moving to the next pick? Who am I kidding? You're Skip Bayless; of course, you have something to add.

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    Skip Bayless: Oh yeah I have something to add... after this commercial break.

  8. #8
    Jay Crawford: And we're back!

    Skip Bayless: thanks Jay, and Stephen A. you're right I have an opinion on this and I want you to get ready because i'm about to take you on a ride with this one because I'm going to shock you right here.

    Stephen A. Smith: Let me guess you're going to say something outlandish.

    Skip Bayless:Wrong! For it to be outlandish I'd have to be wrong. I hated this pick for the Blazers and I want you to hear me out on this. Stephen A., can you tell me a clear direction that the Blazers are going in? Because you just got finished telling me a few moments ago exactly where the Knicks are going with their franchise, and I agree; but the Blazers GM is kind of like a a log in in the ocean and goes wherever the tide takes him and I hate to say it, but as long as he runs his team this way, I don't think I see the Blazers ever being a force in the West especially with GMs who basically drive powerboats in the ocean and leave guys like him in their wake.

    Skip Bayless:Now don't get me wrong, I think the Blazers have pieces, but I can't trust them to not sabotage themselves after the Jason Terry trade. And Stephen A. you know there’s a few GMs out there I put in the same category of self sabtors like the Bucks GM, the Nets GM, who we will discuss later on the show, and to some degree the Rockets GM.

    Jay Crawford:But Skip, what do you think of Tayshaun Prince the Player?

    Stephen A. Smith: Imagine that, Skip Bayless get off subject ranting about nonsense!

    Skip Bayless: That's enough from you! The Diaper, now this; your mother taught you better than to be so disrespectful! Now, on to someone who is respectful, Taysaun Prince. I think he's a wonderful guy, someone you won't have to worry about getting in trouble off the court, but he's a bit dainty. He's a good defender, but doesn't have much of an offensive game. I think he'll be a good NBA player, but won't ever make an All Star game which is what I'd expect out of a #3 pick. Like I said Stephen A., I'm not sold on the pick. If i were the Blazers, I would have tried to leverage it and make a trade with the Clippers, or the Nets to move down in the draft and get 2 first rounders for this one.

    Jay Crawford: And perfect timing Skip because commissioner Stern has just announced the Wolves pick, "Carlos Boozer" from Duke. Thoughts?

    Skip Bayless: This is part of the Shaq trade, and i've got to say I like the pick. My hunch is this pick came down to two guys, Boozer and Ginobili and while I think Ginobili is the better player Boozer's the right guy with them. We all know the Wolves coach desire to play bullyball down low with Gasol which is why it took so long for him to let go of Shaq and Boozer fits right into that scheme. I think with Marbury, Booz, and Pau along with some free agent signings, this is going to be a team that may have a run in them in a couple of seasons. With that being said, they're an injury away from being a bad team, so they've got to get some depth and luck to improve this year.

    Jay Crawford: Stephen A, your take?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by IamQuailman View Post
    Skip Bayless: Oh yeah I have something to add... after this commercial break.

    I really hate you right now. I thought I finally escaped this nightmare

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    Stephen A. Smith: I'm not sold on the Wolves pick of Boozer. It's not a BAD pick, but this Manu guy is going to be something special. And it's hard to find a shooter like that in this league. But Boozer isn't BAD, either. He and Pau will be busting chops in the Minnesota front court for years to come. Very good young team.

    Jay Crawford: Another rare occurence of you agreeing? I better get a jack because hell might be freezing over soon.

    Skip Bayless: It's easy to agree with a guy who knows what he's talking about. Stephen A. has a hard time formulating his own opinions, so be has to borrow mine from time to time.

    Stephen A. Smith: Unbelievable...

    Jay Crawford: The next pick is in... and the Rockets select a gentlemen both of you touched on, Manu Ginobili.

    Stephen A. Smith: The Rockets are basically blew up their team and started fresh, and Manu is going to be the new face of the franchise. This team tried its hardest to tank for the top pick, trading away players like Rasheed Wallace, Cuttino Mobley, and Sam Cassell. Basically gave up on their team, blew it up, and well they have Manu to speak for. Manu comes in and instantly becomes their best player. Not a bad thing, but they better find some talent to put along side him in FA. Either that or they'll suck for one more year and play for a chance at an early 03 1st rounder. If history is indicative of anything, it'll probably be the latter.

    Jay Crawford: Skip, do you have anything to add?

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    Skip Bayless: Stephen A. I am disapointed in you again for giving these teams passes over and over again for their picks. I want you to do me a favor, stop me if I say anything nonfactual here.

    Skip Bayless: The Rockets traded Sam Cassell who's 32 for 2 bags of potato chips and a late first rounder, who was again traded for more by the Mavs.

    Stephen A. Smith: Yep, that's a fact.

    Skip Bayless: The Rockets traded Rasheed Wallace to the Raptors and Cuttino Mobley to the Timberwolves who were both 28. So Stephen A, what i'm saying here is the rockets were starting completely over, correct? we won't get into the trades because I still think they'd be near this spot drafting regardless.

    Stephen A. Smith: Yep, not going to argue that.

    Skip Bayless: Now I say this with all due respect to Manu Ginobili as a player because I know he's going to be great, and I think he's going to be great as soon as he steps in the NBA. But for the Rockets, I HATED this pick. I can't think of any reason outside of a trade that a team would press the reset button on their franchise and start over with a 25 year old player. I'm going to name off a few guys in the league just at the 2 who are younger and already have tons more NBA experience: Tracy McGrady, Kobe Bryant, Vince carter who's the same age.

    Jay Crawford: So skip who should they have picked here?

    Skip Bayless: Admittitedly, I don't think he's the same player as Ginobili is yet, but I think they should have taken JAY WILLIAMS out of Duke who is only 21 years old and would have given you many years to build around him. Let;s cut to Jay's highlights.

    Skip Bayless: This guy is explosive, creative, has range, and is an ultimate leader. He's like a street bike racing against a Honda Civic when he's out there. He is the best talent to come out of Duke Since Grant Hill and more talented than the guy on his same team that was drafted ahead of him earlier in the draft. Jay Williams would have been an absolute steal for this team and the right building block. I'm sure Manu will be an excellent player for years to come, but I just don't believe it was the right move.
    Last edited by BallSoHard; 09-18-2012 at 09:54 AM.

  12. #12
    Jay Crawford: Well, Skip Bayless, it seems as if your constant taunts were noticed on the show and Stephen A. has pulled a few strings it seems. We have SPIKE LEE today live on the show right now!

    Spike Lee: First of all I'd like to say what up to my boy Stephen A, and that it is FINALLY a great time to be a Knicks fan, our time is here Stephen.

    Stephen A. Smith: Preach on, my brother! PREACH!

    Spike Lee: The first couple years were shaky, but the new GM seems to know what he's doing. I absolutely love the Knicks future, hold on to your panties Skip cause I'm about to lay it down: This will go down as the best NBA team ever assembled. Tony Parker, Rip, RJ, Amare and Yao? Are you kidding me? That's 5 future allstars, not to mention loads of cap space, flexibility and future picks. Other than Rip the highest paid guy of our core is Tony at 2.9 mil. All these guys are locked up cheap for the next 3-4 years.

    Skip Bayless:: WHAT? Over Jordan's 72 win Bulls? I like the direction the Knicks are going in but that's Blasphemey to a team that broke the Knick Franchise.

    Jay Crawford: So Spike, What do you think about the Knicks Draft?

    Spike Lee Did I like our draft? Serious question? Do I like our draft!? Is Skip Bayless the most annoying person on TV? Yes yes yes definitely yes, I love our draft. Some analysts have been saying we should've gone with Manu at #2 yeah I like Manu and it would've been nice to have another perimeter scorer and 3 pt shooter. But consider this: Manu is 7 years older than Amar'e. Not only does Amar'e have a higher ceiling, but we don't have to worry about him slowing down in a few years. Yao was a no-brainer. This will go down as one of the greatest front-courts of all time. Big props to the our GM for getting this draft right, and also pulling off a great trade to fill our hole at SF with my man Richard Jefferson

    Skip Bayless: Yeah, i've beeen on the record stating the same thing about Amare over Manu; and what spike pointed out earlier is exactly why I hated the pick for the Rockets. So Spike, what do you think the Knicks Record will be, when do you think you’ll make the playoffs?

    Spike Lee: As far as our record it depends on if we decide to spend in FA, but right now I would say we win around 40 games, it's gonna take us a year to become contenders with how young we are.

    Stephen A. Smith:
    The talent is definitely there to make a push for a lower playoff seed.

    Spike Lee: Yeah, I think we have a small chance at the playoffs this year, but we will definitely be in by next season.

    Skip Bayless: So you're saying on this show the Knicks will be above 40 wins ? How about you put your money where your mouth is and if you're wrong you have to come back on the show wearing an I heart skip shirt?

    Stephen A. Smith: Oh that was a shirt, Skip? I've been using it as toilet paper.

    Spike Lee: Yeah I'll take that bet Skip, and if you lose you have to be in my up coming movie about high school prodigy Lebron James, you will play the part of Lebron's biggest fan at all his games with Lebron shirt, flag etc, and be his personal waterboy.

    Stephen A. Smith: Even if the Knicks are under 40 wins, would you be disappointed? I sure as heck wouldn't. Next year's drafted class is supposed to be even stronger than this year's. I'm sure the Knicks GM would not mind one bit if he had one more year in the lottery.

    Jay Crawford Well thank you Spike for joining us and congratulations on the draft. We look forward to having you back on the show as the season progresses.

  13. #13
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    Jay Crawford: Let's move onto the next pick of the draft, shall we? Nene Hilario was selected 6th overall by the Denver Nuggets. Fellas, any thoughts?

    Stephen A. Smith: Skip, if you don't mind?

    Skip Bayless: Oh, by all means, I cannot WAIT to hear what praise you will have for the nuggets.

    Stephen A. Smith: Au contrairie, my friend. No praise from me here. In fact this is a reach, if I've ever seen one! If anyone needed Jay Williams's ball handling, it was the Nuggets, who jettisoned Steve Nash to the lesser of the SoCal teams for future picks and lackluster players and contracts. Except those future picks are going to most likely going to be late-lottery selections at best. We'll touch on the Clippers later on; but that trade shedded fat and made the Clippers instantly better.

    Skip Bayless: I'm impressed with you formulating your own opinion. Please, go on.

    Stephen A. Smith: So with no one worth a cent in the back court, the Nuggets GM decided to go big or go home. Except he went home with a big that probably could've been had three picks later. In fact, in the spirit of GMs working together repeatedly, the Nuggets GM could have traded the 6th overall to the Clippers for their 8th and/or 9th (probably would have had to spice it up a bit to get both). With that, he could've gotten Jay Williams AND Nene with the Clippers getting their lock-down 3 in Kirilenko. Only in a perfect world would people think like that, though.

    Stephen A. Smith: Now, don't get me wrong. Nene, the one-named wonder, will be a productive NBA player. But who's going to get the ball to him in the post? Terry "the Fossil" Porter? The only thing he'll really be dishing out is a plate of Jell-O from the salad bar at Picadilly. He'll need to work on his defense and rebounding, but there is promise there in both areas. This pick won't drastically improve this team, and they won't be good for a few years at least. Then again, maybe the Nuggets are just playing for the future before the season even starts. I sense an theme coming for this upcoming season.

  14. #14
    Skip Bayless: Stephen A., I can’t disagree with anything you just said there, but again you fail to get into the details and have foresight to what’s really happening here. And I’m calling the Nuggets GM out here and hope the commissioner of the NBA is paying close attention, and the selection of Nene only further solidifies my point. The Nuggets are purposely tanking to win the LeBron James sweepstakes this year. This is the same GM/ coaching combo that BENCHED Steve Nash in favor of Terry Porter 2 years ago and were sanctioned by the NBA.

    Skip Bayless: This GM has a history of selling off parts to better his draft status and Stephen A, if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, by golly it’s a duck. Stephen A., I think this really challenges the integrity of the league and I think he should eb under close watch and I’d say even a freeze of his assets until after the Lottery.

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    Jay Crawford: Wow, that's pretty bold, even for you Skip. Alright and to discuss the 7th and 10th Overall picks, we have with us today Jay-Z. He's wiping some of that dirt off his shoulder and shedding some light on the newest Nets picks. From one Jay to another, welcome.

    Jay-Z: Thanks, J-Craw. Whats up world! The one and only Jigga here to bully Skip around and represent the Nets nation on today's show.

    Skip Bayless: Bully me around? Guess you have to since the Nets haven’t exactly been bullying anyone around.

    Stephen A. Smith: Actually, Skip. You can take the back seat for a minute. I have a couple question's for Mr. Z. I'll start with my first question: We all know you are highly influential in making the picks for the Nets. That being said, What was your reasoning behind these picks? How do they fit into your plan?

    Jay-Z: Well, defense wins championships. AK47 provides that while Nickoloz is talented on both sides of the ball, he just needs a little coaching up, and 1 on 1 time. And I have trust in our staff to do just that, as we aim to get to the playoffs. You can't be apart of this family if you dont win and have a winning attitude, so expect our players and NETS Nation to be cocky and spicey!

    Stephen A. Smith: Oh, I understand that mantra. It's what I preach to the peewee leagues I coach in my spare time. I love the AK47 pick of yours, but the latter, Nickoloz, is more of a headscratcher. Just last season, the Nets GM was tooting the horn of Eddie Griffin as the FUTURE of the franchise. One year later, he drafts a player at the same position as Griffin when there are other needs. He could have easily traded down 3 or 4 picks and gotten a shooting guard to fill the 2-guard void. John Salmons, recently drafted by the Hornets, plays pretty solid defense and can score the ball. He may be a streaky shooter, but I think he would have been the perfect fit for your team. In addition to him, you could've gotten additional assets! Did this ever cross the GM's mind?

    Jay-Z: We tried. We tried. We tried to move down, do you kow how stuck up the other team are? Just messing with you, but as said, we had to go best avaliable and to me and our staff Nickoloz was just that! And drafting him help us squeeze the best out of Nickoloz and Eddie Griffin so they can perform at their best. So I expect them to help each other. Anymore questions to ask about us being a crucial team next year?

    Stephen A. Smith: Oh, I'm done, but you know big-mouth has a few things to say. Something probably SHOCKING.

    Skip Bayless: You're damn right I do, Stephen A. You conceded that argument like most on the show, but I'm not going to let Jay off that easy. Jay, my questions to you.

    Skip Bayless: Number 1: Did you have any chances to acquire any superstars?

    Jay Z: First of all, I don't think you need a superstar to win a championship. You need defense, scorers and hard worker and leaders, then that adds up into one big all-star.This a team game playa! And why are you guys sleeping on my brutha Baron Davis? This year I think he will be a participant in the all-star game and most importanly, step up and lead this team.

    Skip Bayless: Baron Davis hasn't even made an All Star Game, what other reasons do you have for not acquiring one?

    Jay Z: Yes, the price for those all-stars was horrible though. Terrible, then we wouldn't have had any type of role players or any of these picks this year. Then most trades would've landed us a all-star player, while making another team upgrade even more while we decrease. Deals like both lottery pick + important player for 1 UNO ONE all-star is a no no. And no doubt I think we can be the best team in New York, because we ain't done yet, we still have free-agency and training camp this season; and time is the most precious of all because as time passes these young guys will only get better.

    Jay Z: So are you trying to say my team is not going in the right direction beause of no "superstar Stephen and Skip?

    Skip Bayless: Yes, actually I am. Look at the last two champions the Mavs with Karl Malone and the Wizards with Kobe Bryant. Actually look at the final 4 last year and you can add in Grant Hill, Shaq, T Mac, and Glenn Robinson. All those guys are better than what you have. I don’t think the Nets are relevant until they get a star. In fact I’m willing to place a bet that the Knicks who just started rebuilding will be the best team in the New York/Jersey Area and will make the finals first. Willing to bet on that Hova? You come on the show with a I heart Skip Bayless shirt if you lose.

    Jay Z: I’ll take you up on that bet.

    Jay Crawford: It wouldn't be a show without Skip making a bet with someone. Again, thank you again for joining us today, Jay Z. Good luck with the upcoming season!

    Jay Z: Thank you, Jay. Thanks, Stephen A. and Skip, you going down.
    Last edited by IamQuailman; 09-19-2012 at 08:46 AM.

  16. #16
    Jay Crawford: Well, as we have one guest leave, we have another guest Rudy Tomjonavich. Welcome to the show and congratulations on the draft. Some are excited about it, Stephen A., and others are not so excited about the pick, unless it’s involved in a trade, like Skip Bayless. Like we do on First Take, we give everyone a chance to respond to comments made on this show. So, what did you like about Manu that made you pick him at this spot?

    Rudy Tomjanovich: We feel Manu is pound for pound, the best player in the draft. He can pretty much do it all with his scoring, ball-handling, passing, and intangibles. He fills a premium position as a wing scorer. You either win championships with an premium inside scorer or a premium wing scorer. Manu can be a wing scorer who can also create for others too. Also, the guy is just a winner and will do whatever it takes to win games. Guys like him are rare in this league. We liked Jay Williams and his potential, but we didn't want to build our team around a PG. We either wanted a premium inside scorer or a wing scorer.

    Skip Bayless:
    Ok, and I think everyone agree’s that Ginobili is going to be a special player, and I know you’ve heard my comments on the situation. I think at your spot and situation with no peripheral talent you should have taken the younger guy with the higher ceiling and have yourself more time to build a franchise. I don’t think you’ll be in the running for a playoff spot anytime soon.

    Rudy Tomjanovich: We feel Manu can help us win games late in the 4th quarter and even though he's 25, we've seen guys dominate into their mid to late 30s. Also, it's hard to build long-term in this league when guys can be a FA after 4 years. Every FA we've had the last two seasons have tested the market. So essentially, its hard to rebuild without tanking. There's no franchise tag, no restriced FA. So its hard to build around one player long-term. Also, we don't believe in tanking. After our major deadline trades, we played our best players and played .500 ball the rest of the season beating a few playoff teams in the process.

    Stephen A. Smith: Ok, see I liked the move unlike Skip, but what’s the long term plan here, because Skip and I agree that you won’t be in the playoffs soon without some big moves. Who or what positions are you targeting?

    Rudy Tomjanovich: Before the draft, we only had 5 guys on the roster. We added Manu and Drew Gooden and still have one more 1st round pick and 2 second round picks. That leaves us with 8-10 players on the roster. Can't really give away our strategy, but we do have holes in the frontcourt and backcourt and on the bench as well. Interesting to see how FA will turn out for us. We will try to field our best team this season

    Skip Bayless: After your trades last season where you seemed to abandon ship quickly and looking to see the Mavericks getting more value for cassell than you did, any regrets on blowing the team up? Lessons learned?

    Rudy Tomjanovich: We don't have any regrets blowing the team up at the deadline. We were lottery bound and also had no cap room in the future so basically the team was going no where. With the trades, we added more draft picks for the future and cleared up cap space. We don't regret the Cassell trade. It was the best trade at the time and we didn't want Sam to be stuck on a rebuilding team. Also, we got the Mavs 2004 pick which has potential. We do have regrets in the 2001 offseason trading quality veteran backups for draft picks because it had a big effect on our season and we don't plan on making those same mistakes.

  17. #17
    Jimeert Freedet 4 Prez IamQuailman's Avatar
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    Nov 2010
    Jay Crawford: Alright with time starting to run short on this edition, we are going to close out our show by discussing the team taking Caron Butler with pick #8 and Jay Williams with pick #9, the Los Angeles Clippers.

    #8 Caron Butler

    #9 Jay Williams

    Skip Bayless: Stephen A., I'll defer to you first, because you won't believe what I'm going to say.

    Stephen A. Smith: Honestly... Nothing coming out of your mouth surprises me anymore. Anyway, let's discuss the first pick, Caron Butler. The Clippers had a strong need for a player at the 3. Al Harrington just wouldn't cut it. Kirilenko was what he needed most, but the Nets snatched him up at 7. Luckily for the Clippers, the 2nd best SF in the draft (and by far, the superior scorer of the two) was still available. For me, this was a no brainer, Skip.

    Skip Bayless: Oh, yes. I understand the need. But I--

    Stephen A. Smith: One second, Skip. Let me finish here, because I actually think you'll agree with me here. Now what blows my mind is picking Jay Williams at #9 with one-day Hall of Fame PG Steve Nash on his team already. This wasn't a need at all. And I completely understand drafting the best player available, but not when the best player available is going to play behind the best player on your team! Trading down some picks, as I mentioned earlier, to get a guy like John Salmons at the 2 could've been a good move and would've addressed a need. Now there are rumblings from some sources indicating that the Clippers have expressed interest in playing him at the 2 while Steve Nash plays point. I'm not sure how this will work out, but it's a wait and see situation here. Now what were you going to say?

  18. #18
    Skip Bayless:Yeah, i've got to agree with you on Jay Williams here. I think the reason the Clippers haven't been sucessful is the GM's philosophy of hording assets instead of fielding a good team. We see taking the best player left in the NFL draft often outside of the QB position often and it works there, but the NBA is different. I really can't understand this move unless he has a trade developing for Nah or Williams in the background.

    Skip Bayless:On the other hand, I did love the Caron Butler pick and think this will help build a team and think Butler can be a glue guy. I don't quite see him being an All star but I see him as being about to score 15 grab 4 or 5 rebounds and a couple assist per game. A really solid player.

    Jay Crawford: Well Guys we are all out of time today. To our host, Skip and Stephen A. It was a pleasure!

  19. #19
    Alright guys I know that dragged on pretty long and we appologize but there was a lot packed into that show. We really appreciate any feedback we get.

  20. #20
    Jimeert Freedet 4 Prez IamQuailman's Avatar
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    Nov 2010
    And thank you again to Trell, rbow., and Hornets78 for contributing!!

  21. #21
    For...ev...er... The JNR's Avatar
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    Dec 2011
    @HRJNRHEAT Tuned in to watch the special to see what they thought about our pick at 13, they ran out of time arguing w Spike Lee.
    @HRJNRHEAT just like our fans, ESPN doesn't care about the Heat. We'll have to make em care!

  22. #22
    Max Contract Contributor AD23forMVP's Avatar
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    Mar 2008
    4 points

  23. #23
    Jimeert Freedet 4 Prez IamQuailman's Avatar
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    Nov 2010
    thanks.bro! Have a good trip!

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